Proper nutrition is essential for a high quality of life and an overall sense of well being. Many Americans, however, struggle with knowing what foods are healthy to eat, and what foods are best consumed in very small doses, and so levels of obesity and weight-related disorders and diseases continue to rise.
Even artificial sweeteners can raise your blood sugar and insulin levels in much the same way as sugar. Although they may be lower in calories, they are not necessarily any more healthy. Instead change on how much you depend on sweet things. Start by cutting your sugars in half and work you way to not needing them at all.
For optimal nutrition, make sure you include enough fiber in your diet. Fiber is beneficial in the reduction of cholesterol, which is crucial in the prevention of heart disease. It also regulates your gastrointestinal system so you will not become constipated. Fiber can keep blood sugar levels stable, which is especially important for diabetics.
Planning your meals and grocery shopping ahead of time will make it easier to maintain a healthy diet. Stick to your shopping list when you are at the store so that you won’t be tempted by unhealthy snacks and junk food. Make sure your meals are giving you all the nutrients you need to stay healthy.
Watch your salt intake. While we need a certain amount of salt to insure good health, too much salt has been proven to have a number of adverse health impacts. If nothing else, too much salt can result in our retaining water. Who feels like exercising when we are bloated with excess water?
A great nutritional tip is to start eating dinners that are high in healthy fats. Fat takes a long time to digest and keeps us feeling full longer. This is beneficial at night because it can carry us through our sleep, without wanting to eat again or snack on anything.
Good nutrition starts at home. If you teach young children how to eat properly and introduce them to healthy foods early, they will be more likely to grow up enjoying a higher variety of healthy foods. Proper nutrition also leads to better food choices in the long run and less risk of obesity.
A great nutrition tip is to bring your own healthy snacks with you to the movies. Movie theaters are notorious for the unhealthy food they sell such as popcorn and candy. The butter they use on their popcorn is extremely unhealthy. It’s much healthier to bring your own snack.
When you are at the grocery store, look at the nutrition facts of the foods that you buy. Try to purchase foods that have a low content of saturated fat. Reducing the amount of saturated fat in your diet will help to restore a thin body structure, and help you lose weight.
When looking to improve your nutrition with a good source of antioxidants, don’t overlook the value of the ever popular pumpkin. The antioxidant in pumpkin comes from beta-carotene. It can give a boost to your immune system function and reduce the risk of cancer and heart disease. Adding pumpkin to your diet also gives you added fiber.
You can help make fast food a little less damaging to your daily nutrition routine by leaving out the bacon when you order that burger. Instead of the bacon, order extra tomato. Tomatoes are a good source of fiber and contain good levels of vitamin A. A fresh tomato also offers a supply of potassium for good cell function.
It is important to get enough fiber in your diet, because it helps reduce cancer risk and prevents a disease called diverticulosis, in addition to helping prevent constipation. Good sources of fiber include whole grains, whole fruits, and vegetables, in lieu of, white bread and white rice which are poor choices.
Consume whole grains as a regular part of your diet. Whole grains have been proven to reduce your risk of heart disease and diabetes. They have the ability to help you maintain healthy blood sugar levels. Avoid over-processed white bread products and instead, choose whole grains.
Drink plenty of water. When you are thirsty you may be dehydrated. Instead of drinking sugary drinks or soda, drink water. This will help flush your body of toxins, cool your nervous system and refresh your muscles and brain. It can make you less stressed when you stay hydrated and refreshed.
For optimum nutrition, eat fresh fruit instead of drinking fruit juice. Fruit juices are often loaded with extra sugar and high fructose corn syrup that creates empty calories and can lead to weight gain. Fresh fruit has only natural sugars and is also a great source of vitamins and fiber.
It can be difficult, if not downright impossible, to fully enjoy life on a daily basis if your overall nutrition leaves much to be desired. Improving your nutrition, however, need not take days – by implementing the tips and suggestions listed below, you can begin to feel the benefits virtually overnight!